“Ethnic” Food and the Cultural Legacies of Orientalism

Links to this week's readings can be found at: https://linktr.ee/1882WeeklyReadings This week, we're looking at the messy intersections of food and culture with hopes of untangling the ways in which Orientalist tropes often reappear in disguise as multiculturalism. Can food truly act as a space for unproblematic cultural exchange? How can we create a vision of multiculturalism that centers not only the food itself but the people who make it?  Readings: Anthony Bourdain (articles linked above) — In an era in which the hunger for “culturally authentic”…

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07.30: Orientalism, Part II — “Scientific Orientalism”

Notes and questions for Part I of Said's Orientalism can be found here. You can register for our upcoming Book Chats at: https://linktr.ee/1882foundation In Part II of Orientalism, Said continues with his description of the historical underpinnings of Orientalist thinking, shifting his attention to the modern foundations of Orientalism in 18th-century Europe. As Europe / the West progressed technologically, Said explains that Orientalists began viewing Asia as a place which could regenerate Europe spiritually. Orientalism in the 1800s thus introduced a new philosophical development: the Orient as…

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July 23 Weekly Book Chat Update: Notes / Readings on Returning Home

Following last week's discussion of Orientalism, we're shifting our focus to the idea of homeland — as culture, as concept, as a real or imagined place. In an era where xenophobia and racism reign and mass consumption has reduced “culture” to a corporate buzzword, the question we want to focus on this week is: what does a meaningful connection to homeland look like?  “Here on the earth where bones are buried, the question remains: if the birds of history alight by a ritual of body…

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July 16 Weekly Book Chat Update: Notes on “Orientalism”, Chapter I

Our first book for our Weekly Book Chats is Orientalism, by Edward Said. You can find the registration link for the Book Chats here: https://linktr.ee/1882Foundation under "Weekly Book Chat Registration"   Why we chose this book:  Said’s Orientalism paved the way for modern studies of colonialism. Using the term “Orientalism” to refer to depictions and fabrications of the “East” by Western colonial powers such as the late British empire, Said outlined a theory of cultural imperialism, arguing that Western depictions of “Eastern” culture were driven by a false…

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1882 At: MOCA Forum on “Asian American Allyship for Black Lives Matter”

Co-written by: Saniya Han & Kyle Wang The Museum of Chinese in America hosted a forum on “Asian American Allyship for Black Lives Matter” on June 19, or Juneteenth, a day which commemorates the emancipation of the formerly enslaved in the U.S. and also marks the anniversary of the murder of Vincent Chin. For the panelists, — former U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke, President-Designee of Queens College Frank Wu, and their moderator, MOCA director Nancy Yao Maasbach — the focus of the conversation echoed the…

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